Thursday, July 28, 2005

Karen Gets Serious...

On the RTB column yesterday, Sharon Long, talked about the on-going fight between Romance and Erotic Romance, but that’s not what I’m gonna talk about.

One of the readers of her column made a comment that I thought was very interesting, as did quite a lot of other people, thus the discussion went completely off topic after this:

There is an underlying dialogue in this issue that is really beginning to bother me. That is the assumption that anyone who is uncomfortable reading erotica is somehow ignorant, closed-minded, or prejudiced.

Consider this: If a person is uncomfortable with interracial marriage, does that make him a racist?”

My answer to this question, is pretty much a resounding yes.

Mostly because in my mind, when something makes you feel uncomfortable, there is usually a reason for it. The discomfort comes from a place that you may have never thought existed, and probably would never openly acknowledge, even to yourself, but it’s there all the same.

As human beings, we constantly make snap judgements on various situations, and sometimes, the conclusions we draw can lead to feelings of discomfiture.

If somebody looks at a black and white couple, and it makes them feel uncomfortable, what other conclusions can be drawn from that?

You can argue that they aren’t racist, that it’s just something they are unfamiliar with, but that’s simply not true.

We just don’t want to admit to being racist, because admitting it would be like saying that we are bad human beings. Which wouldn’t be necessarily true either.

The fact is, all of us, have it within us to be racist or predjudiced towards certain people or certain situations. We may not acknowledge it, but it’s there all the same.

Even I have it, and I’m pretty much perfect:) It’s not desirable, nor is it something I would usually ever even think about, but I know that deep, way deep down inside of me, those undesirable feelings are there, waiting to be triggered. But the difference is, the feelings aren’t strong enough to make me act on them. After all, I’m basically a good person.

Racism isn’t just about looking at somebody and actively or even inactively disliking the colour of their skin. It’s way more than that, and in my opinion, it has many forms.

The key thing is, that not everybody wants to embrace their inner-racist, and rightly so, because that would make you a bad human being.